As a rule, we are all for avoiding a lot of “screen time” for our little ones. When we do turn on the TV, we do our best to choose programs wisely and use the time strategically – i.e. to divert on a long plane trip or to achieve a bit of quiet in the house when we really need to get something done.
But every now and then, we like nothing better than to plan a movie evening for the family. After an early, easy supper, we dim the lights and cozy up together on the couch to watch one of our favorite children’s movies. And there are so many masterful, magical ones to choose from that are sure to delight even the youngest (and oldest) in the audience.
The movies we love for our preschoolers are ones that transport us back in time to our own childhoods. They are good enough to make us feel like kids again – so much so that we are genuinely excited to watch them with our kids! So without further ado, we heartily recommend the following gems to you and yours.
We love it for its magic and whimsy, its songs, the dazzling Julie Andrews, and its reminder: “let’s go fly a kite!”
The Red Balloon
This classic French film of the 1950s tells story of a boy and his magic balloon. Preschoolers are enchanted by the notion of a balloon that follows its master around rather than floating off into the sky (a small tragedy most kids have experienced all too often!).
A brilliantly executed version of the timeless theme of toys that come to life when children are not looking.
The sweetest and easiest of all the princess tales – here’s the one to start with!
Dr. Seuss’s Horton Hears a Who
This film captures all of the zaniness and idealism of Dr. Seuss’s beloved tale an elephant who believes in and protects a civilization no bigger than a mote of dust.
Can we ever get enough of Wilbur, Fern, Charlotte and their crew of barnyard friends? Truth be told, we’d prefer to introduce this beautiful story in its original book form, but concede that the film version is pretty great too.
Alice in Wonderland
So lovely and strange, this story helps us see into the dreamlike workings of a child’s mind.
The Jungle Book
Every child’s fantasy of living among the animals of the jungle fulfilled!
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
Who can resist the seven dwarfs and their lovely princess? After watching this gem all together, “Hi-ho, hi-ho, it’s off to work/school/play we go!” is apt to become a kind of household anthem.
Pixar’s masterpiece needs no additional praise from us other than to say that our preschoolers adore it and so do we!
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